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Towards new elections in 2016

21 September 2015 / 22:09:41  GRReporter
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No sooner had the first result estimates of yesterday's vote outcome been announced than many Greek analysts became convinced that the country would soon hold new elections. Their main argument is that the Radical Left SYRIZA and its coalition partner, the Independent Greeks, neither want nor are able to implement the serious measures foreseen in the third bailout memorandum.

From the scanty information about the brief consultations before rattling off a new cabinet it became clear that all other parliamentary parties have turned down getting involved with it. All this happens against the background of commitments under the third bailout looming large.

In a situation like this, the implementation of onerous measures is called into question, and unless the government meets its commitments Greece will again face the prospect of being kicked out of the Eurozone.

In its analysis in protagon.gr, journalist Tassos Teloglou explains why he thinks the new Greek cabinet will not survive longer than a few months, and Greeks will soon have to vote again.

The ballot actually reproduced accurately the government coalition formed in January. PASOK won, Potami collapsed, New Democracy didn't budge a millimetre, despite the disastrous governance of SYRIZA and the Independent Greeks (ANEL). Fofi Gennimata and Evangelos Meimarakis did what they had to do: refused to participate in the cabinet of Tsipras and Kamenos. Vassilis Levendis also said yesterday he would stay out of such a government. Potami's participation in a cabinet along with the Independent Greeks is out of the question, especially after their crushing result. Therefore, we have yet another opposition party on our hands.

Most of the measures laid down in the memorandum will have to be implemented by the end of 2015, about 56%, and these are the heaviest ones, too. They are related to taxation and pensions. SYRIZA and the Independent Greeks are going to support tax increases while the opposition forces will propose cuts in government spending. On the pension issue any agreement between them will be a tall order.

Against this backdrop, the debate on the measures that parliament will vote until January 2016 will not set the ground for broader agreement, as it will be conducted amidst a constantly worsening economic situation.

It is not clear how SYRIZA, as a party of the Left opposing capitalism, will cope with a memorandum, the success of which hinges on the ability of the private sector to create more wealth, so that the debt becomes manageable and jobs more plentiful. SYRIZA is unable to manage either private sector growth, as we have seen in the past seven months, or the creation of institutions, which could contribute to the modernization of Greek society, public administration and economy.

The more the economic situation deteriorates, the more SYRIZA will seek to put the state under control through nominating its own people to various positions. Meanwhile, the possibility for expansion of the cabinet, which will implement the third memorandum, will be fading away, and the threat of Grexit will be coming closer.

Tags: Politics coalition government Syriza Independent Greeks memorandum opposition Grexit
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